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Ali & Jase’s Travel Diary

Saturday, 28 Apr 2018

Location: Mt Etna, Sicily, Italy

MapEarly start today to catch a walking tour of Mt Etna. First up, about an hour's drive through the lava flows before we got to the set of cones we were to walk on. Above 2000m, it gets quite desolate, lots of debris from various eruptions. As Etna is not a "explody" volcano, unlike Vesuvius, you don't get so much pyroclastic debris. So no pumice, more basalt and scoria type rocks and stones.

We walked a string of six cones that had all erupted in 1923. The two guides, Giorgio and Paulo were very knowledgeable and gave us loads of info about volcanos and Etna in particular. Apparently, Ruapehu is a similar volcano to Etna.

The lava flows, or tongues, are quite noticeable, several villages on the slopes have been destroyed by them. But deaths are low as the lava only moves at about 40 meters per hour, so even I could outrun one.

Then we took a walk through a lava tunnel, which was interesting and quite cold. Cold enough that it had been used to store ice over the summer in days gone by.

Lunch was with Don Salo, at his winery. Very filling and we again skipped dinner due to too much lunch.

Then off to see the Alcantara gorge. Ali went for a long walk up an icy river in bare feet with razor shall pebbles, while the sensible one of the pair kept his feet dry and got no cuts from sharp river stones...

Then back to the apartment after what was quite a long, but interesting day.